toto drake eco TSU33A fill valve cycling on and off quickly

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by Maxxsounds, Jan 6, 2013.

  1. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Idaho
    Hi,
    45 minutes of searching and nothing yet. Toto drake eco version, about 2 years old. Tank is st743E, bowl is elongated and the handicapped version. fill valve says "e-max by toto" on top and is green.

    Upon flush, the fill valve cycles on and off about once per second until the tank is full. Never did this before. Fill valve seems to work correctly except the cycling on and off. No leaking in between flushes.

    Is this fill valve able to be disassembled and cleaned? With a fair amount of pulling, I cannot seem to get the top cover off. It seems to be one piece to me. Am I not holding my mouth right?

    Thanks in advance for your time.
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Last edited: Jul 25, 2014
  3. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Idaho
    toto e-max fill valve issues cycling on and off quickly

    Thank you for the quick reply. The fill valve on my drake looks different than the one you have shown there. Attached is a photo of mine.

    I am trying to determine if the symptoms warrant pulling the valve out.

    The volume of water coming through is as strong as before, it just cycles on and off quickly. If the filter on this valve was clogged, wouldn't there be a reduced volume of water coming out?

    If I partially close the valve on the wall behind the toilet while it is filling, the cycling stops and I get a steady (less volume) stream of water. Thanks again, you guys rock! toto drake #2.jpg

    Attached Files:

  4. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,117
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    www.terrylove.com/korky

    What you have is the Korky fill valve.
    A replacement for that would be the Korky MaxPerformance.

    Or, you can remove the black fill tube, and pop the green cap off.
    Under that you have a float and a cap. Remove the float, spin off the cap, counter clockwise. You may be able to clean that or replace the cap.

    [​IMG]

    Assuming that you are overflowing the tank into the overflow tube.
    If it's just refilling because of a leaking flapper, deal with that first.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  5. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Idaho
    Nothing is overflowing. The flapper is not leaking. Just a rapid on-off of the valve when it is filling the tank. Instead of turning on once and turning off once, it is doing that 50 times in one fill of the tank. Once every second. It stops when the tank is full. Would a defective cap cause that? Thanks guys, learning as I go...........
  6. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,129
    Location:
    New England
    The repair cap costs about $3 and is available at Lowes, any plumbing supply house, and some hardware stores. Once you figure it out (The instructions are on the package), it takes less than a minute to replace or check. I'd pick one up (you'll need one eventually, anyways), remove the current one, check for debris, put it back in, see if it works, and if it doesn't replace it with the new one.
  7. gusherb94

    gusherb94 Member

    Messages:
    124
    Location:
    chicago/nw IN
    Where does your water come from? That tank is filthy for just 2 years. That would be what a tank that was in service for 40 years around here would look like, at worst.
  8. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    That is what a tank looks like when you have iron in your water.
  9. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Idaho
    Ha, Boise,ID there sir. ALL city water is that way. That brown is iron deposits. When you pull the screens off the lav faucet, you come up with about a half a teaspoon of little white pellets, kinda looks like kosher salt. Don't know what that is.
  10. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
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    Location:
    New York, NY
    Here's the video from the valve manufacturer on how to clean/service the valve.




    My guess is that the iron deposits in the water have just made something or somethings in the guts of the valve dirty.

    It's a quick, easy and rewarding process to pull the Korky valve apart, clean it and get it working again. My guess is that there is schmutz in the white screen filter, schmutz in the cap with diaphram and some schmutz in the bottom of the float housing which may be affecting the little white check ball. You can even use some dish washing liquid on the pieces if they are really dirty. Just be sure to rinse it all off.

    Let us know how you make out.

    Also...maybe a dumb question but you don't have one of those "no leak" connectors between the water supply on the wall and the inlet to the fill valve on the toilet, do you? If that got gunked up, it's possible that it's the problem. Also make sure your water supply faucet on the wall is open all the way; sometimes you get a jackhammer if it's not.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 26, 2014
  11. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

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    8
    Location:
    Idaho
    I'll get back in there tomorrow afternoon. I guess I wasn't pulling hard enough but it seemed that the very top of the valve was not coming off easy. I have opened similar valves and the top just popped right off. This one felt like it was all one piece or glued together.

    That's why I stopped and started asking questions. Probably the iron deposits doing all this.
  12. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,892
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Remove the rubber tube and pop it open by lifting up on the little green tab on the leftmost edge of your bottom photo in the post that the forum software has labelled "#3".

    If all else fails, this valve (Korky MaxPerformance 528MPK) for $10.47 at Lowe's is the replacement, and takes about 10 minutes to install: LINK
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2013
  13. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Idaho
    After about five minutes of pulling, it finally broke loose. Everything was "welded" in place. I should have took some more pics but I didn't. that thing was dirty Cleaned 'er all up and popped it back together. Now it stutters on and off about three times a second. Must be the cap huh?
  14. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,892
    Location:
    New York, NY
    It might be the cap, it might not be. But I would replace it as the next step.

    I know that the problem abates when you close the supply valve at the wall a little. However, my own experience with a similar issue was that I got a stutter when not enough water was coming through the valve, and I note that Terry often recommends making sure the supply is fully-open when people raise similar issues. This suggests that you might have some buildup or restriction in the supply hose or at the supply valve. However, I wouldn't go there until we're sure nothing else (less expensive) works.

    Did the cap look dirty inside? For the $3 it costs to replace it, I guess it's worth a try as replacing it solves a lot of ills on the 528. And given that the valve itself isn't very expensive ($10.47 for the 528MPK at Lowe's, but not available at HD), that's probably your next step after the cap. But if neither approach works -- i.e. it's not the valve -- then I would look at the supply line (I'm assuming you have a braided flexible one, as that's what most people use nowadays, rather than a solid metal supply) and maybe the supply valve.

    However, odds are that replacing the cap would do the trick. It's the R528 cap (the only cap that Korky sells), and you can get it at Lowes, Home Depot (I think it's a buck more there) and a lot of local hardware stores.

    Let us know how it goes. Also, if the cap-fix doesn't work, because two years is pretty quick to lose the valve, you might call Toto at their toll-free-number and see if they will send you a replacement fill valve for free. They are actually very friendly and eager to please, and they send stuff pretty quickly. They sent me a new valve for free without question when I had a problem with a (Voreto-made) valve on one of my Drakes pretty soon after I put it in. They will probably send you either the TSU99A.X (which is a Korky-made universal valve very much like the 528MP) or a Voreto-made valve that they also use on their toilets. (That's the one in Terry's picture, which you can see has far fewer opportunities for self-help as all you really can do with it is try to clean that filter.)

    I look forward to hearing how it works out.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  15. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Idaho
    Went down to my local plumbing supply house today. They had the whole valve on sale for $7.99 so I bought it. They did not have just the cap. Anyway, after swapping out a few different pieces, I got a functioning valve. The caps were quite different from each other as you will see in the photos. (I don't know what the original cap was supposed to look like new) I had to use the old float. The new float did not fit in the old housing correctly for some reason. thanks for your help guys. toilet fill valve cap old.jpg Toilet fill valve cap new.jpg
  16. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    1,892
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Actually, I think it's the same cap except one is beat to $&!^. In your photo, you can see the tool marks in the new one which have resolved in exactly the places as the old one, just not as deep.

    Answer -- it was the cap. And now you have a complete valve if you ever want to replace any other parts except the float. For that price, I'm guessing they sold you the white-cap 528, but all you needed was the cap. If you got a 528MP, then you got a really good price.

    I'm so happy we were able to get you back in business with a relatively-minimal hassle. Now that you're up and working, you can still consider reporting the failure to Toto and seeing if they'll send you a new valve; that way you can put it in the drawer until next time. Taking the whole valve out actually is pretty easy, you usually can unscrew the mounting nut on the old one by hand or with one application of pliers, and then you have everything new when you put in the new one. Toto customer service is at 1-888-295-8134. Note it's an 888 number not 800.

    Congratulations!
  17. gusherb94

    gusherb94 Member

    Messages:
    124
    Location:
    chicago/nw IN
    Wow that cap that was in there looks horrible for 2 years! The Korky in one of our Drake's is going on 7 years old with the original cap and still looks more like the new one you showed a photo of! Your water pressure must be very high, or perhaps it's something in that dirty water that didn't like the rubber much!
  18. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,129
    Location:
    New England
    Wouldn't hurt to check your water pressure, and if you have a closed system, verify that the expansion tank has not failed. There are lots of threads discussing closed/open water supply systems and the use of an expansion tank. WHere I live, one is required, period, even in an open system. Now, it doesn't do much there, but if the water company ever upgrades the meter or supply, it could easily become a closed system and you're already prepped for it. The Korky valve shuts the water off fairly slowly, but if there's another device around nearby that is fast acting, water hammer could pound that seal pretty hard. Maybe a hammer arrester would help.
  19. Maxxsounds

    Maxxsounds New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Idaho

    Thanks, I'll look into it. I really appreciate all you guys that helped me. This site rocks.
  20. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,892
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Thank YOU for starting what has turned out to be a fun and informative thread. Jim and Gary have posted quite a bit of good advice on water pressure around this forum, including how to use a $10-or-less meter to check it and what to look for with respect to expansion tanks. The diaphram in that cap was really squashed, so it occurred to me that maybe it was a water pressure issue, but that's not my expertise so it was good to see others weigh in on it.
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